Alina Arutyunyan

Manager, Development

Growing up, I went through different phases for my career dreams – singer, teacher, psychiatrist. In high school, an economics class piqued my interest enough to want to keep studying that subject. I attended the University of Michigan and majored in Economics. During college, my early interest in teaching reappeared; I joined a work-study program where I tutored elementary school students. After graduation, still unsure of my career plan, I became a volunteer tutor at a nonprofit called KidsFirst. I volunteered for many months and then was at the right place at the right time when a six-week staff position became available. That temporary gig was such a good fit that it turned into a full-time position, and I became a grant writer for over four years at KidsFirst. As a grant writer, while submitting proposals to different funders, I developed a fondness for community foundations. This led to my next position as I joined the grants management staff at the Boston Foundation. Working in philanthropy deepened my appreciation for nonprofits, and this perspective guided me towards NAF’s important mission.